Betas get a break

Three fraternity brothers ruled not guilty of hazing

A test of Matt’s Law, the 2006 California statute named in honor of Chico fraternity pledge Matthew Carrington, who died in 2005 during a bizarre hazing ritual, has resulted in acquittals for three local men.

Former Chico State students Christopher D. Bizot and Michael F. Murphy and former Butte College student Matthew W. Krupp were initially busted for hazing in April 2007 at their East Third Street residence—a former home of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity—about seven blocks from the house where Carrington died after a night of strenuous exercise and copious water consumption.

Early on, defense attorneys claimed the initiation activities of ice baths and strenuous calisthenics were harmless hijinks, and thus a poor test case under Matt’s Law. And at trial on Tuesday (Aug. 25), a Butte County Superior Court jury came to the same conclusion, acquitting the men in less than three hours, reported the Chico Enterprise-Record.